Imagine a hot, scantily-clad woman working under the hood of your truck. Fantasize no more: This could become a reality at Jorge's Auto Shop on Saturday, Nov. 10.
The Southern Arizona Sex Workers Outreach Project is hosting the event to raise money for the fifth annual International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers on Monday, Dec. 17.
"It's a mixture of current and former sex workers and supporters," said Juliana Piccillo, a member of the group. "There are some who are licensed mechanics, and they're training the other women on how to do a certified oil change."
Sex Workers Outreach Project is a national organization dedicated to promoting the rights of sex workers and reducing the violence and stigma attached to the industry through education and advocacy.
"We're trying to bring dignity to sex workers," Piccillo said. "We have a right to use our bodies to work, like everybody else does. It's a way for women to be sexual, sexually empowered, wear bikinis and still be smart, safe and proud of their sexuality."
All the money raised at the oil change will be used to fund workshops, including classes on self-defense and rape, and a processional march on Dec. 17.
The International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers began as a memorial to the victims of the Green River Killer, Gary Ridgway, who preyed on prostitutes. Piccillo hopes the day will draw attention to the problem of violence in the industry.
"When we do political work, we do it a little differently," Piccillo said. "That's pretty hot ... a woman in a bikini who will be working on your truck."
There is no set price for an oil change, but donations starting at $20 are suggested. --D.P.
One of the oldest scooter rallies in the United States is departing from Tucson this weekend, with music, motorcycle rides and camping.
This event may sound more familiar to you as the "Spooky Halloween Ride," the name given to the event by co-founder Dave Schuttenberg and other members of Tucson ska band Dave's Big Deluxe, who are reuniting for this weekend's event.
The rally--open to all types, sizes and kinds of motorcycles--kicks off Friday at 6 p.m., with a meet and greet at Hotel Congress. Registration for the 125-mile ride to Nogales will take place at this time, as will registration for overnight campsites. The rest of the evening will feature Dave's Big Deluxe and a jam session in honor of the rally.
At 11 a.m. on Saturday morning, the riders plan to leave from Hotel Congress.
"Some people like to race down there, and others take their sweet time, so we will stop at a few points along the way to regroup and have lunch," says Megan Noli, who along with her husband, Matthew, is organizing the rally this year.
You may want to bring a tent and reserve a campsite for $25, because riders will be greeted by beer provided by Ska Brewery out of Colorado. Phoenix's DJ Marble and DJ Victor will be spinning music at the campsite, and a free barbecue will be provided by Scarab, a scooter club out of Phoenix.
"The $25 will cover all the beer you can drink, two cooked meals--one being Sunday-morning breakfast compliments by Patrick Forsythe, owner of the Grill on Congress--a T-shirt and a patch," says Noli.
Riders will return from Nogales Sunday morning. --J.W.
For the second year in a row, the largest traveling environmental film festival will stop in town to inspire and educate Tucsonans to make a difference in the community.
"Overall, the selection of films is outstanding, even better than last year's," said Keri Dixon, the Center for Biological Diversity's membership director.
Seven films will be shown at the festival. Dream People of the Amazon depicts the lives of indigenous Amazonians.
"I've not been down the Amazon before, but the videography is breathtaking," said Dixon. "It gives you an idea of how people who live down there depend on their environment."
Another film is Lethal Sound, which spotlights the effects of underwater sonar use.
"It's about a very serious, very gruesome problem," said Daniel Hinerfeld, the coordinating producer of the film. "It's about high-intensity sonar used by the Navy. They practice with it all the time, and they're killing and injuring a lot of marine mammals."
The Center for Biological Diversity, the event's host, opened its doors in 1989. The Tucson-based organization is now the nation's leading nonprofit group of its kind, focused on protecting endangered plants and animals.
"Every species is important and plays a part in the environment, from fairy shrimp and snails to the Mexican gray wolf and polar bears," Dixon said. "Even minnows are important in their ecosystem."
The festival is at the Loft Cinema. Doors open at 6 p.m., and the show starts at 6:45 p.m. Tickets are $10, available in advance at Tucson Summit Hut stores and Bookmans locations, and available online. --D.P.
The Southern Arizona Koi Association (SAKA) is hosting its 28th annual Koi Show and Auction, giving the public an opportunity to view beautiful koi fish--for free!--on Saturday and Sunday, without traveling to east Asia.
Owners from around the country will participate in a contest Saturday, during which their fish will be judged in a series of categories. Blue tanks holding 300 gallons each, set up in a circle, will contain a variety of colorful koi fish, representative of love and friendship, at Kino Veterans Memorial Center.
Koi lovers from around the country will be coming: Yes, these fish are a big deal to some.
"A guy named Tommy Hui from Texas will be coming to town with his fish. The owners of (the Sierra Vista-area) Mountain View Koi Shop ... will also be there," SAKA's Darleen Panter. "Some people have traveled to Japan and bought $5,000 koi fish; at this event, there will be fish anywhere from $5 to $5,000."
Saturday evening at 7 p.m., an awards banquet is being held at El Parador, 2744 E. Broadway Blvd., to celebrate the contest winners.
"All the club members, judges and whoever else wants to go is invited. It's $25, which includes a buffet-style meal," says Panter.
Sunday at noon, an auctioneer will start the bidding at a koi-fish auction at the Memorial Center.
"Club members who have too many fish will donate or auction some off as a way for the club to make money--but they're not the fish that were in the showcase," says Panter. --J.W.